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Private plane propeller severs Florida woman’s right hand, two toes


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A Florida woman lost her right hand and two toes on her right foot when a propeller blade hit her Saturday as she was helping to prepare a private plane for takeoff at Key West International Airport.

A report from the Miami office of the Florida Highway Patrol listed Rebecca Lynn Gray, 45, as a passenger in a 1966 Cessna model 172S plane being piloted by her husband, Walter V. Gray, 46. The couple rented the plane in Fort Myers, where they reside.

The Federal Aviation Administration is conducting an investigation of the accident, her father-in-law W.V. Gray Sr., told the Fort Myers News-Press, part of the USA TODAY Network.

“My daughter-in-law, Rebecca, will recover,” he said. “Obviously, it could have been much worse, for which we are very thankful.”

At approximately 9:30 p.m. EDT, Gray was outside of the aircraft removing the chock blocks that were keeping the plane’s wheels in place, in preparation for takeoff, the FHP report said. The engine was on and the single, front-mounted propeller was spinning.

As she removed the chock blocks from the plane’s front wheel, the right side of the spinning propeller struck the right side of her body.

Gray was initially taken to Lower Keys Medical Center and later flown out to Ryder Trauma in Miami.

Connect with this reporter: MichaelBraunNP (Facebook) @MichaelBraunNP (Twitter)

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Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/news/2019/10/14/florida-woman-loses-right-hand-and-toes-in-propeller-accident/3977216002/



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